Credit: MUNI

MUNI’s RECETOX Institute Joins World Health Organization’s Collaboration Network

Jana Klánová, director of the RECETOX Institute, during her meeting with Hans Klug and Srdan Matić in Brno. Photo credit: MUNI.

Brno, Jan 31 (BD) – As of the beginning of January, the RECETOX research centre of the Masaryk University Faculty of Science has joined the network of collaboration centres of the World Health Organization (WHO), which includes over 290 centres in Europe, and now four in the Czech Republic. 

The news was announced by Hans Kugel, director of the WHO regional office. RECETOX becomes the fourth WHO centre in the Czech Republic, joining the Institute for Mother and Child Care (since 2015), the Institute of Health Information and Statistics (since 2021), and the National Institute of Mental Health (since 2021). The centre will transfer experience and provide experimental capacity, technical support, training and education. It will also join the WHO Chemical Risk Assessment Network, which will connect European experts with countries that need more ability in these areas. 

“It is an honour for us, a great appreciation, and also a commitment, that Masaryk University can become a collaborative body of the World Health Organization through RECETOX,” said the rector of the university, Martin Bareš. “Especially when we consider that we are the only Czech university and also the only organisation outside the direct competence of the Ministry of Health that has received this prestigious appointment.”

RECETOX’s cooperation with the WHO will focus on the assessment of risks associated with the population’s exposure to chemical substances. The institute has already been working with the WHO in this area since 2013. Through national and international monitoring networks, it provides information on the contamination of external and internal air, water, and soil, as well as on the effects of various toxic substances. Long-term population studies monitor the development of the health of the Czech population as well as the influence of a wide range of negative factors. It develops database systems making all data available for scientific studies and political decisions at a global level, and also carries out research into local cooperation, building living laboratories and healthy smart cities.

“In 2009, RECETOX was appointed by the United Nations Environment Program as a Regional Center for Capacity Building and Technology Transfer in Central and Eastern Europe, within the framework of the Stockholm Convention,” said Jana Klánová, director of RECETOX, “After 14 years, our work in the field of transferring scientific results into practical applications and legislation has been awarded with a second prestigious appointment by the WHO. We appreciate it immensely.”

RECETOX is also the coordinator of the European research program EIRENE, which supports European institutions in creating sufficient experimental and data capacity for interdisciplinary research on the effects of toxic substances on the environment and population. Joining the WHO network will therefore create further potential for disseminating the information and knowledge needed to protect public health,

“I am glad that the new, fourth collaborating centre in the Czech Republic is RECETOX, one of the most important institutions in the field of human biomonitoring and research into the effects of environmental pollution on human health,” said Srdan Matić, director of the WHO Office in Prague. “There are only two such institutions in the world and one of them is at the Masaryk University in Brno.”

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